St. Pat’s events offer festive relief from finals

Even though St. Patrick’s Day lands smack dab in the middle of finals week this year, that doesn’t mean you can’t pull out at least most of the stops to celebrate.

By Hayley Lamberson

While St. Patrick’s Day might fall in the middle of finals week, this doesn’t mean that the most you can do to celebrate is wear green on Tuesday. The University isn’t sponsoring any events, but there is plenty to do around the city for drinkers and teetotalers alike. Just make sure you don’t get too hungover to study for finals.

It may too late to attend the Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown, but there is always the South Side St. Patrick’s Day Parade at noon Sunday beginning on 104th & Western. As the more authentically Irish of the two parades, this one will feature more traditional Irish song and dance and less leprechauns and “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” buttons. While the neighborhood offers much in the way of bars and pubs, there are also plenty of activities for families throughout the day.

If you’re heading downtown this weekend, be sure to check out the green Chicago River. As opposed to its usual murky blue-ish green, the river is dyed a very Patty’s Day-appropriate emerald green. This 40 year-old tradition doesn’t last long though, so go within the next couple of days.

Irish bistro Mrs. Murphy & Sons (3905 North Lincoln Avenue) will be hosting a special brunch on Tuesday, complete with raffles for restaurant gift certificates and other prizes. Featuring typical St. Patty’s fare like corned beef and cabbage, fish and chips, and plenty of specialty beer and wine, the brunch will be sure to please anyone wanting to stray away from the green beer and celebrate in a more sophisticated way.

The Irish American Heritage Center is throwing a St. Patrick’s Day Celebration (4626 North Knox Avenue) on Tuesday in their Fifth Province Lounge beginning at noon. For $10, you can get in touch with your own Irish roots by listening to modern and classic Irish music, learning Irish dance, drinking Guinness, and eating traditional food.

For those who don’t intend to remember this St. Patrick’s Day, Wrigleyville (a short walk from the Red Line Belmont stop) has enough bars and taverns to last you the whole day, and you can be sure that they will all have holiday-themed drink specials and events. However, if you’re hesitant to leave Hyde Park, Bar Louie (5500 South Shore Drive) is offering specials on Bailey’s and Guinness (for the truly dedicated, try the Irish Car Bomb) and adding Irish food to its menu.